Natural, in all its shades

Natural, in all its shades

Posted by Rose on 7th Mar 2022

Natural color fabrics, especially in textiles such as Sympatico’s hemp/Tencel blend that's undyed, can subtly vary from lot to lot.

I’ve spent a good bit of time over the past decade staring intently at Sympatico’s undyed natural color fabric. As it comes from the mill, in its undyed state, the 55% hemp and 45% Tencel content impacts the fabric’s final look and feel. The color of Natural can vary a fair bit between bolts of fabric. Which makes sense since hemp is a natural fiber crop that depends on nature’s variables including soil, sun and rain. The same goes for the eucalyptus trees that are transformed into sustainable Tencel.

The slightly more structured look of Natural fabric works well in the Tuxedo Top and has a brighter, near-white look.

The slightly more structured look of Natural fabric works well in the Tuxedo Top and has a brighter, near-white look.

Once dyed, those subtle shade differences usually disappear, but undyed Natural can range between soft beige to creamy, off-white tones. These subtle shade differences manage to survive the industrial scouring (using oxygen bleach) the fabric receives to remove dirt and impurities. For people with pronounced sensitivities to textile dyes, undyed fabrics are a good option, as is the soft hand in our hemp - Tencel clothing.

Thanks to the Tencel component in my fabric blend, those who find all-hemp garments difficult to wear on their sensitive skin usually find Sympatico’s fabrics completely comfortable. 

Each batch of Natural fabric varies slightly as is the case with this creamy Princess Top.

Each batch of Natural fabric varies slightly as is the case with this Princess Top that leans toward the creamy end of the Natural range.

From a style standpoint, Sympatico’s Natural is appropriate year round. A versatile neutral, it coordinates with virtually any color. The fabric has a slightly textured, linen-like appearance that provides a nice ground on which to show off a favorite scarf or necklace. Because it has received less laundering than dyed Sympatico fabrics, Natural retains a bit more structure, making it a great choice for styles like our popular hemp - Tencel Tuxedo Top.

Over time, the hemp content in Sympatico fabric will continue to soften with washing and wearing while remaining very shapeable. For those who want the softening effect sooner, a couple of dryer balls or tennis balls on cool tumble-dry setting will speed things up.

womens hemp Tencel topswomens hemp Tencel skirtswomens hemp - Tencel pants

Speaking of washing, whether your Sympatico apparel is in Natural or garment-dyed, the same easy-care prescription applies. You can wash and dry the Sympatico collection fearlessly, preferably in cool or cold water followed by tumble drying on cool. Or better yet, line dry your Sympatico clothing. Some shaping of the wet garment may well eliminate the need for touch-up ironing. The same holds true for tumble drying if you promptly remove items from the dryer. For more persistent creases, water spritzed on the fabric will often relax the hemp into presentable shape when left to hang overnight,

You’ll find lots more ideas for lessening the impact of washing and drying your clothes here

In your quest for a natural lifestyle, does natural color fabric play an important role? Tell us about it below.